State Veterinarian Encourages Colleagues to get Involved During Fair SeasonTue, 13 Aug 2013 11:42:13 CDT
Fair season is right around the corner and State Veterinarian Rod Hall encourages all veterinarians to get involved. He says the work is rewarding and is a valuable outreach to the public.
“Even those of you who don’t do any livestock work, I would encourage you to get involved with the Fair Board and OSU Extension in your county so you can have input into the county fair. We’ve tried for the past two years to get information to the fairs about biosecurity and how to prevent animal to human or human to animal transmission of disease. If you are a part of the fair planning you can be very valuable in educating the fair management and help put some safeguards in place.” (For a list of county fairs in Oklahoma , click here.)
Swine flu is back in the news again, and Hall says that everyone, not only veterinarians, can help prevent its spread.
“We all need to be aware again of H3N2 variant influenza. This is a type of influenza that some swine carry that can be passed to humans (or vice versa) when there is close contact between swine and people. There have already been some cases reported in the upper Midwest where they start their fairs earlier than we do. This causes routine flu symptoms in people and pigs. Our goal is to help prevent the transmission of the disease for the health of people and animals, but also to prevent undue poor publicity regarding agriculture in general and livestock exhibitions in particular.” (For more information on swine flu, click here.)
Another disease that has been in the news of late is Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea virus or PEDv. Though not in itself fatal or transmissible to humans, Halls says it is nonetheless very dangerous and should be taken seriously.
“ This is a disease that has been described as “Transmissible Gastroenteritis on steroids”. It causes severe diarrhea, dehydration, and death in baby pigs less than five weeks old. It has caused significant death loss in commercial swine farrowing operations in the past two months. The thing that I would like you all to caution your clients who have breeding swine is that more mature swine can have the disease without showing symptoms. Viral particles can be inadvertently picked up and transported back to a show pig producer’s herd, where it could cause nearly 100% death loss in baby pigs. It’s easy to imagine that this could be disastrous to the producer or a 4-H or FFA member who has a few sows as a project.” (Click here for more information on preventing the spread of PEDv.)
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